Welcome back, students!

August 23, 2023

Dear Carolina students,

I hope you have all enjoyed a restful and productive summer. After spending two weeks in Greece, I returned to campus energized and ready to welcome the new academic year with you. The start of the fall semester is a great time of renewal and new energy.

You will notice some changes on our campus this fall. We are expecting a record number of new freshman students, and we are excited to welcome them to Gamecock life!

Last week, we celebrated the grand opening of our expansive Campus Village residential community, with space for more than 1,800 residents, plus academic support resources, gathering and study spaces, and retail shops. I hope you’ll find some time to explore this exciting development, which promises to enhance USC’s student experience.

We also have new campus dining options that offer more seating, more variety, more options for people with specific food preferences or requirements, more hours of operation, and new locations – among them, The Pavilion at Campus Village, a 650-seat all-you-care-to-eat dining space, and The Halal Shack in Russell House, with authentic Middle Eastern street food. And more is coming!

A less visible but still noticeable change on campus is increased internet access, thanks to continuing improvements in our wired and wireless networks. Upgrades will continue; the summer months were a great time to make changes with minimal disruptions to classes and studies.

The health and well-being of our USC students is always a priority. This summer, we welcomed Mari Ross-Alexander as our new associate vice president for Student Health and Well-Being to oversee the ways we safeguard and support the health of our student community. With her help, we will build on the new services we introduced last spring and continue to address student wellness through an array of programs and resources.

This fall, we are also initiating the implementation of a new, four-year model for undergraduate academic advising. We have heard your concerns, and we envision this new structure as a means to ensuring a high-quality and equitable advising experience throughout your years at Carolina.

You will also find that we have expanded parking options for students. More spaces are available in the Horizon and Discovery garages and on surface lots, as well as in commuter lots that now are served by additional buses and increased service hours for Rides on Demand, Park & Ride, and other campus transit needs.

We hope these and other new features will help make this a great new year for you at USC. As we settle into new schedules and familiar routines, I look forward to connecting with you on the Horseshoe, at campus events, in your classrooms, and wherever our paths may cross – including Williams-Brice Stadium for Gamecock football very soon!

Wishing you all a great semester!

Michael Amiridis